Variety reported yesterday that Gary Ross's deal to direct the movie adaptation of The Hunger Games is "all but done."

Ross's other directing credits include Pleasantville and Seabiscuit (based on the book by Laura Hillenbrand)—which just might be my family's favorite movie of all time.

Entertainment Weekly blogger Darren Franich has posted an amusing "open letter" to Ross, in which he begs for the director to not make the movie gritty:

Reading Hunger Games, you’re struck by just how vivid and alive the forest is. It’s Katniss’ escape from drudgery, the one place she can really feel alive. Listen to her describe the valley outside of District 12: “teeming with summer life, greens to gather, roots to dig, fish iridescent in the sunlight.” That’s sounds more like the Technicolor-organic wilderness of Avatar than the dark, shadowy woods of Twilight. Conversely, the Capitol reads like a fascist version of  J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek: too bright, too colorful, overpopulated with highly-caffeinated supermodels. But again, no gritty here.

I have to agree with Franich—it will be seriously disappointing if The Hunger Games movie has no wow factor of eye-popping color. (Think of all the costumes the Tributes are forced to wear!) What's on your wish-list for the movie? I'm afraid the movie will seriously downplay the violence and uplay the romance. In my mind, Katniss is a warrior first—her romantic entanglements are an afterthought. (It's heartening that Suzanne Collins herself wrote the screenplay, although she may be limited by the movie's rating . . . it will almost certainly be PG-13.)

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